I was in a worship service in CCCM back in the early 90's.
There was this guy next to me who was so moved in his worship that he just had to stand up and lift his hands to the Lord as he worshiped.
Now I had been at CCCM from the very beginning and could recall those incredible days of the Jesus People, all standing and freely expressing themselves in worship in many ways.
This usher was off base and irritated me by the fact of what he had just done.
One of the greatest places of freedom to worship that I know of today is the Vineyard Community Church in Laguna Niguel.
Today's lesson is about our expression in worship of the Lord.
Intensity In Prayer
Prayer and intercession must be with an intensity, yet with a creative faith that does not beg but calls into being.
That is what God wants.
In this generation we have to overcome one of the greatest hindrances to the walk with God at the present time: the need for our worship to be deep.
At times it is going to be wordless, so deep that it will be beyond utterance.
Our prophecies at times will be so referent that it will be impossible to express them.
There will be the extreme presentation of intensity.
The world will not understand it, and that probably will be the chief cause of persecution against us, as it was against David.
David was a man after God's own heart.
Even now God is raising up a people after His own heart.
Have you ever told God, "Break my heart with the things that break Your heart."
Whatever David did, whether attending a funeral or making mistakes, he was still a man after God's own heart.
When he sinned he repented with all his heart.
When he sorrowed he would tear his clothes, put ashes on his head, lift up his voice with a loud cry, and weep until he had no more strength to weep.
He had an intensity in his feelings and he was totally OK with it.
And when he wanted to worship the Lord in intensity before the ark of the covenant, he threw off his clothes and danced with all his might.
( II Samuel 6: 14-21 ) .
My home church had a pastor who denigrated emotions and feelings as if they were bad in and of themselves and of little value.
Even now, as in David's day, there are those who despise that intensity.
They are embarrassed by it and want no part of it.
They do not want to be that deeply or intensely involved with anything.
To give a corner of their emotions or a type of soulish expression is fine, but an intensity of spirit that demands everything of soul and body to respond is embarrassing to them.
This generation, in its depravity and degeneration, is embarrassed by anything that comes on strong, anything that is intense.
Michal, the wife of David, despised him in her heart and made fun of him; she was sarcastic about him.
It was difficult for her to understand that she was married to a man of God with such intense feelings.
In her position as queen she was embarrassed, and because of that the curse of God was on her from that time on.
She was barren until the day she died ( II Samuel 6:22-23 ).
Much of this generation, many in your family, children or parents, will be almost embarrassed by the intensity with which you worship the Lord.
It is true that you should honor your father and mother, but still I encourage you not to let the fear of man hold you back from the intensity with which you worship the Lord.
It is true that you should honor your father and mother, but I still encourage you not to let fear of man hold you back from the intensity of your intercession, the intensity of your prophecy, and the intensity with which you worship the Lord.
God is telling us to have the most intense crying out to God and prophesying we have ever known.
Let us be filled with the Holy Spirit.
Any who are not filled with the Spirit, let them have hands laid on them and be filled with the Spirit.
If anything is lacking, let us believe the Lord to enter into it with all our hearts.
It is not a time for little halfway measures or even worshiping as before.
It must be even more intense.
O God, grant to us to act with all our heart and soul and everything within us.
That is what You required from the beginning: "Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy soul, and with all thy strength" ( Deuteronomy 6:5 ).
Lord, we purpose not to give you anything less.
Let us not be embarrassed by one another's intensity, but let us be understanding and encourage it, in the name of the Lord.
Some come with a little, feeble prophecy as far as the volume is concerned, but their whole heart is in it, to them it is everything.
Others come on strong and practically explode; do not despise what they give either.
In this particular expression we are all gathering together that portion, that no man despise another person's offering, but rather blesses and strengthens him in it- that it will be intense with all his heart.
Have the understanding and faith for what is coming forth.
People may be worlds apart in their ways of expression, but it does not make any difference.
They can all be equally intense in their own way.
Look beyond the outward expression, and look for this intensity of heart.
Do not despise it, because when they give with their whole heart, it is of the Lord.